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Blogs / Influence

Mayors Fret Over Fiscal Cliff Cuts

September 21, 2012

Across-the-board cuts scheduled to go into effect next year could wreak havoc on the nation's cities, according to a letter 131 mayors sent Thursday to congressional leadership.

"We are particularly concerned with deep reductions in non-defense discretionary spending, one-third of which is directed to state and local programs," they write in the letter spearheaded by the United State Conference of Mayors and sent to Sens. Harry Reid, D-Nev., Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Reps. John Boehner, R-Ohio, and Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.

Education bears the brunt, or 36 percent, of the impact of the cuts to state and local programs, they write. Housing and community development account for 28 percent of those cuts, with health and the environment and the workforce taking up 18 percent and ten percent, respectively.

A deficit-reduction plan should include both spending cuts and additional revenue from tax reform, the mayors write.

"Any federal budget solution that does not make the necessary federal investments in metro infrastructure, education and public safety will impede the national economic growth necessary for our nation to maintain global competitiveness and future fiscal health," they write.

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